Battle of Morat, 22 June 1476 (Switzerland)

Second major defeat for Charles the Rash, duke of Burgundy in his wars against the Swiss. Having rebuilt his army after the defeat at Granson in March, Charles laid siege of Morat, only thirty miles from Berne, hoping to provoke a Swiss attack. In preparation, he fortified his position around Morat. There were several main weakness in his position - the multi-national nature of his army, which, as at Granson, reduced their effectiveness, the closeness of the Forest of Morat to his position, which let the Swiss get close to his forces undetected, his decision to split his army, with one part separated from the rest by the fortress of Morat and finally, a very limited number of routes for a retreat, all of which could be blocked if the Swiss were able to defeat the right of the Dukes army. Using the woods as cover, the Swiss army was able to do just that, having marched along the front of the Dukes left and centre in the cover of the woods. Meanwhile, Duke Charles had allowed the bulk of his troops to return to their camps, leaving his fortifications lightly defended, and the sudden Swiss attack soon overwhelmed them, after which the battle was lost, and unlike at Granson, large numbers of casualties were inflicted on the Duke's trapped army.
How to cite this article: Rickard, J. (7 October 2000), Battle of Morat, 22 June 1476,

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